Safety in our Schools
The Grande Prairie Public School Division is committed to schools that are safe and secure places for learning. With safety as a top priority for our Division, GPPSD has developed an Emergency Response Plan to effectively deal with emergency or crisis situation that may arise in our schools.
The plan works in conjunction with other local emergency plans and could include the involvement of numerous community agencies. The plans created for individual schools, along with the Divison plan, are reviewed annually and after an emergency situation occurs.
To learn more about Grande Prairie Public School Division's Emergency Preparedness Plan, please review the following document:
- Notify the school if your child will be absent or late. We want to ensure your child arrives at school safely.
- Be sure the school has an updated emergency number in the event that your child is injured or becomes ill at school.
- As a parent, model safe behavior as you walk and drive together with your child.
- As you walk your child to school, talk about crossing the street and being visible to drivers.
- Bicycles used by young children on busy streets can be hazardous. Please supervise your child's riding and help your child develop skills in safe areas.
- Talk with your child about how school safety patrols can help.
- All Grande Prairie Public Schools adhere to the Violence/Threat Risk Assessment (VTRA) protocol to proactively promote student safety. Fair Notice Letter Information
Things to know:
- the names of teachers who will be working with your child
- the school procedures regarding care of outer clothing, field trips, fees and supplies
- the school calendar - identify holidays and special events
- the school timetable - starting and dismissal times
- the school's emergency procedures
In the event of an emergency, we kindly request parents respect to the following:
- DO NOT call the school: We understand and respect your concern, but it is essential that the telephone system be available for emergency communications.
- DO NOT call or text your child's cellphone: Please do not call or text your child's cell phone, as this may impair emergency communications and, in some cases, may place your child at risk.
- DO NOT come to the school until instructed to do so: It may be necessary to keep the streets and parking lot clear for emergency vehicles. If evacuation is required, students may be transported to a location away from the school. You will be notified of this through the District Communication Department via the community hotline, district website, social media and the media.
- If you arrive at the school in the midst of an emergency, please respect the protocol in progress. While we understand personal circumstances or initial reactions might move you to do something contrary to the school's established procedures, we cannot compromise the safety of students or staff to accommodate individual requests that could put anyone at risk.
Keeping informed during an emergency, parents CAN:
- CALL our community hotline (587-259-8101): This hotline provides updated information regarding the emergency. It is a one way system and cannot receive messages.
- Visit our Division website regularly (www.gppsd.ab.ca): The main page on our website is continuously updated in the event of an emergency.
- FOLLOW our social media pages: We update our social media pages every 20 minutes to help the community and parents stay up-to-date with the situation.
o www.twitter.com/gppsd2357 (@gppsd2357)
To ensure optimal protection against vaccine-preventable diseases, it is important that your child's pre-school immunization is completed prior to Kindergarten entry.
In the Kindergarten year, your child will receive a vision and hearing screening test on request. The community health nurse will discuss with you any difficulties your child may have.
Assessment, consultation to teachers and parents and therapy services are available to students with speech and language difficulties. Referral and consent forms may be obtained through your school principal.
Community Health Nursing Services
You may contact the community health nurse through your school or the public health unit regarding any health or behaviour concerns.
Smoking in school facilities is prohibited in the Grande Prairie Public School Division. The Board has banned the use of all tobacco products, including smokeless tobacco, and expanded the ban to include all Division property. These changes reflect the intent to go beyond a concern for second-hand smoke and to provide children and youth with positive role models and a consistent message regarding tobacco use.